Scotland U18 7s round-up: Rugby Europe U18 7s Championship 2023
Scotland U18 7s finished in 7th place overall at the Rugby Europe U18 7s Championship in Prague, with the side taking key learnings from the competition.
Scotland U18 7s finished their first day at the Rugby Europe U18 7s Girls Championship in Prague on a positive note, securing two wins against Ukraine and Poland.
Scotland v Ukraine
Scotland got their campaign off to a flying start after recording a 45-0 win against Ukraine.
Scotland came firing out the blocks as a superb break down the touchline from Niamh Robertson-Jack saw her sprint under the posts in the first minute of the match, followed by a successful conversion.
Scotland extended their early lead when Lucy MacRae weaved her way through the opposition before dotting down, with the skipper converting her own try.
Moments later, Nicole Flynn was next on the scoreboard for Scotland, with another conversion taking the side to 21 unanswered points at the break.
Following the interval, Flynn was back in action as she cruised past the defence to score under the posts, with Rianna Darroch successful with the conversion.
Holland Bogan kept the scoreboard ticking, powering her way over the line on the 10th minute.
Some brilliant offloads set up the perfect platform for Scotland’s next score, with Megan Hyland sprinting over the whitewash.
As the game came to a close, Niamh Ross raced over the line to score the last try of the game, with Minala Taoi adding the extras.
FULL-TIME: Scotland 45-0 Ukraine
France v Scotland
In the final Pool A match, a dominant French side recorded a comprehensive 36-7 win against Scotland.
France took the early lead with a converted try in the first minute but Scotland retaliated when Freya Maccoll sprinted down the pitch to score, with Rianna Darroch adding the extras.
France hit back with two successive tries before the break despite some gutsy defensive work from the Scots.
France carried their momentum into the second-half, scoring another five tries to extend their lead and ultimately secure the victory.
FULL-TIME: France 48-7 Scotland
Scotland v Poland
Scotland’s final match of day one saw the side claim a 26-12 victory against Poland, rounding off a positive start to the weekend in Prague.
Poppy Mellanby was first on the scoresheet as she darted her way past the Polish defence to score, with Minala Taoi kicking the conversion through with ease.
Poland narrowed the gap with a score but Scotland were soon on the attack again as Megan Hyland made a searing break to breeze in under the posts.
Poland were looking dangerous but Scotland rallied and were able to regain possession before Lisa Brown dotted down ahead of the break, with Taoi adding the extras.
Scotland continued their positive start into the second-half, as Holland Bogan cantered over the line to score, with Rianna Darroch adding the extras.
It wasn’t long until Poland were able to rally and were able to grab their second try of the match moments later.
Poland began to pile on the pressure in the closing moments of the match but the Scottish defence held firm to secure the victory.
FULL-TIME: Scotland 26-12 Poland
Czechia v Scotland
Scotland just fell short in their first match of day two against hosts, Czechia, despite a gutsy comeback from the side (24-12).
The hosts got the proceedings underway with two tries in quick succession, extending their lead to 12 points by the break.
Shortly after the interval, the hosts were back on the scoreboard with another try but Scotland launched themselves into action when Freya Maccoll displayed some blistering pace to make a break through the defence before crashing down under the posts to score, with Maccoll converting her score.
Czechia’s response was prompt as the hosts dotted down for another score but Scotland remained determined and Maccoll was soon claiming her second try of the game following another brilliant link break.
Buoyed by the growing confidence, Scotland were able to close the gap on the scoreboard when Lucy MacRae dotted down, with Minala Taoi adding the extras.
Sensing an opportunity, Scotland tried to keep the pressure on Czechia but the hosts were able to keep firm in their defence and eventually held on to victory.
FULL-TIME: Czechia 24-21 Scotland
Scotland v Belgium
Scotland quickly found their stride in the game as Zoe Mitchell scampered over the line to score, followed by a successful conversion by Taoi.
Errors proved costly for Scotland, as Belgium capitalised with three tries to take the lead into the break.
Both sides struggled to get a foothold in the second-half, with Belgium fighting off any Scottish attacks to hold on to victory.
FULL-TIME: Scotland 7-15 Belgium
Scotland v Ireland
Next up was Scotland’s last match of the day against Ireland. The Irish displayed their dominance from the get-go, with a clinical performance seeing the side run in six tries throughout the match.
Scotland were able to salvage a score through Taoi in the final moments of the game, but Ireland’s comprehensive lead was too out of reach for the Scots.
FULL-TIME: Scotland 5-43 Ireland